Thursday, 12 April 2012

Season Ends with Shutout Loss to Edmonton

The Edmonton Oil Kings jumped out to a 4-0 first period lead and went on to a 6-0 win over the Brandon Wheat Kings on Wednesday night.

Martin Gernat scored twice while Laurent Brossoit stopped 24 shots in the Oil Kings' net as Edmonton completed a four-game sweep of the Wheat Kings in the Eastern Conference Semifinal.

Playing without captain Mark Stone and Michael Ferland, who were both sidelined with upper body injuries, it was an uphill climb from the start.

Henrik Samuelsson opened the scoring for Edmonton 2:50 into the contest and after the Wheat Kings' showed some push-back for 5-6 minutes, Mark Pysyk scored shorthanded at the 9:00 mark to make it 2-0 and deflate the Brandon bench.

"Our opportunity to tie that game up was when Favreau went in on a great rush and he kind of bobbled the puck a little bit and we didn't get a good shot like we wanted to," said Brandon coach Cory Clouston on CKLQ's post-game show, "They came back right away and scored shorthanded and that was kind of what broke our back."

Travis Ewanyk and Gernat scored before the end of the first period and the Oil Kings didn't look back from that point on and they won their 19th consecutive contest.

"It's one of those things that, when you're down 3-0, it's tough coming up to that game and credit to them, they gave it everything they had, they didn't let off or anything like that," added Brandon defenceman Brodie Melnychuk, "They gave it their best and we just didn't."

Melnychuk, Paul Ciarelli and Darian Dziurzynski, Brandon's 20-year olds, all played their final WHL games Wednesday night.

"You look at all the good teams in the league, they have lots of good people behind the scenes," said Melnychuk, "We have Kelly McCrimmon here, who makes every guy part of the family."

While Brandon's season ended Wednesday, the season will be continuing for Wheat Kings' defenceman Ryan Pulock.

Pulock is expected to join the Canadian team for the World Under-18 Hockey Championship in the Czech Republic.

Pulock finished third in defenceman scoring in the regular season with 60 points and added three goals and five points in nine playoff games.

The World Under-18 Championship actually begins Thursday with Canada
taking in Denmark in their opening game.

Pulock should join the team in time for their next game Saturday against Finland.

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